Folk is ringing, spinning, heaving - and then calms down, coming us down too. This is how differently it sounds on the third day of the Euroradio marathon. As if having arranged it earlier, the artists demonstrate the maximum variety and the full scope of traditions - proving that music can not be limited by place, style or time: it is endless and covers everything.


“Narajama” opens the final

With soft chines of the dulcimer the music of the Czech ensemble “Narajama” opens the third, final day of Euroradio Folk Festival. Gradually the meditative sounds become more sophisticated, change their shape - and blossom. We hear energetic percussion and solo of bass guitars - the ensemble can be taken for a trendy rock band! But the rich in melismata female vocal reminds us that there is a folk group on the stage. The play of rhythms and voices brings us not only to the Moravian region which is native for the musicians, but also allows us to travel over the oceans - to the unprecedented Indian rhythmics and the American jazz of our century, as light as the wind.

Igor JUDAS: “Narajama” is a title of a Japanese film. Our drummer was so impressed by this masterpiece that suggested we should call our group “Narajama”. Nobody objected, and the decision was taken unanimously. Our music has absorbed a lot. Part of our lyrics reflect the feelings of the members of our team. Some meanings are hidden from the audience, while the other part is based on folklore tunes.”

Harmony and mysticism of Finnish epos

Recitative, lightness, a quick change from half-whisper to falsetto and back turn the transparent and cold melodies of the north into antique jewelry. It is done by Päivi Hirvonen from Finland. She plays several musical instruments, but her main skill is the ability to control her own voice masterfully. First you hear minimalistic string instruments which tune us properly and create the harmonic background, then you hear the voice - and there starts the magic. This music cleans your consciousness, makes you feel in trance and concentrate on your own emotions.

Päivi HIRVONEN: “In my creative work I often turn to everyday things. My songs and music are clear to everyone: for example, achieving a goal, embodiment of the dream or the broken heart. In short, things each of us encounters every day.”

Joyful country style from “Brina Trio”

Warm campfire parties, a halt during a family trip in a van - these things can be heard in the music of “Brina Trio” from Slovenia. The ensemble makes you feel exceptionally comfortable with the enveloping female vocal, unhurried guitar and accordion accompaniment and uncomplicated horn solo. This music tunes you to the wave of creation, joy and love of life. In spite of the bright ethnic component, the melodies of the ensemble should not be called purely Slovenian: they open the whole world and invite us to travel in the company of the dearest and nearest ones.

Brina VOGELNIK: “One of our songs contains national Balkan melodies, others can be quite different: quiet and slow lullabies. I think people should hear my music - it differs from a lot of other things they can hear today.”

The instruments created for each other

Bass guitar, cello and the Norwegian fiddle hardingfele are the instruments created for each other if they are played by Erlend Viken Trio from Norway. Simple and unassuming at first sight, the melodies sound so natural that create an impression of something that has always existed in nature - the musicians just took them to make other people enjoy. The performers move with the music making us dance. They are devoted to the traditional culture of Norway, and through their music we hear its pastoralism - alongside with real European gloss and exactness of each nuance. After the electric guitar is replaced by the acoustic one, the music starts resembling good country.

Erlend VIKEN: “Our music is based on Swiss and Norwegian traditions. We compose new pieces turning to the past. We are inspired by national motives, beauty of the scenery and films. You can see a cello, acoustic and electric guitars, a hardingfele (a traditional Norwegian fiddle with a lot of strings) and a banjo on the stage.”

Music of the world from a Spanish ensemble

Almost jazz jams combined with a bagpipe, violin and confident male vocal bring us to the place where time does not seem to exist. The “BRATH” band makes an impression of a cohesive team which knows and skillfully combines music belonging to different nations and epochs. One can hear a march-style drum solo, juicy accordions, energetic wind instruments and overflows of the keyboard. It is not easy to guess that “BRATH” comes from Spain. You want just to enjoy these combinations of rhythms and timbers defining their songs as music of the world.

Eloi CALDERIA: “Our groups unites the musicians belonging to absolutely different directions. As a result we get a combination of blues, rock and traditional music. I come from Galicia - the region in the north-west of Iberian Peninsula. The music I compose is full of local flavor - there was a period when Celtic tribes lived there. You can hear it all in our music.”

 

Refinement and beauty

Oud, ney, kanun, kemenche - these words do not mean ancient spells, they are just the names of instruments which were brought to Euroradio Folk Festival by “The Anatolian Music Chamber”. Warm, refined and spicy music of Turkey sounded at the final and probably one of the most beautiful concerts of the three-day marathon. The ensemble plays exclusively traditional ethnic music without any deviations. This “stability” looks especially fresh and non-standard at the background of the general trend of mixing different styles. Meditative tranquility and peacefulness reflected in their music match the final of the Festival perfectly well.

Ersoy HAKTANIR: “On the stage you can see six instruments for performing folk music. Among them there is a national string instrument with a very long neck called tanbour. Another instrument, also a string one, is called kemenche. In contrast with the first one, this instrument is very compact”.

The sounds of the outlandish instruments and overflows of voices ceased. 39th European Folk Festival departed to history - not of our radio staton only, but that of the whole world. Once again we had a chance to see how varied our planet is and - which is even more important - how beautifully it sounds.